Our Thoughts On Handling Discipline In A Blended Family
Ok, so you have the whole discipline thing down when it comes to your own kids. But when you merge two families together and you actually start living together. It is only then you realize how different parents have different discipline styles and what may be a big no, no in your parenting book might be ok with your new partners. So it can be very hard to know how to deal with discipline when it comes to your new kids, but here are a few ideas, suggestions and just general ways that may help you out and stop you from crying in the bathroom.
Talk, Talk And Then Talk Some More!
If one of the kids does something that you do not agree with and your partner or spouse just ignores it. Rather than let it fester and drive you nuts, bring it up. Talk to them and let them know that you do not think that is right. At the same time be sure to be open to listening to their reasoning for why they are cool with that kind of behavior. Communicating with each other is the best way to make sure discipline is handled on a united front which will help keep those crafty kids from playing you against each other.
DoNot Make Too Many New Rules
Blending two families into one can be an earth shattering thing for a child to deal with. Throw on top of this a whole new set of rules from a step parent and you are just asking for trouble. Start things off slowly, make sure that you make it clear you deserve their respect, but at the same time you have to compromise with them on certain rules you may have. Just always remember that this is a huge change for them and any rule breaking they may do may not even be intentional.
Do Not Be The Bad Cop To Your New Kids
This cannot be stressed enough! You should not be turning a blind eye if little Jimmy is getting ready to fly down the stairs on his skateboard. But when it comes to full on discipline for something they did wrong. It is always best to let their mom or dad be the bearer of bad news and work as the bad cop. Any yelling or telling off that you do, even if they are in the wrong will be met with severe resentment.
Do NotLet Them Walk All Over You
At the same time though, you have to let them know you are an authority figure and while you may not be the one laying down the punishments or doing the yelling. You are not going to just stand on by and watch as they throw food, fight each other and in general just do the stuff that kids do to push boundaries and see just how far they can go with you! Make sure you let your kids know that your new partner deserves the same respect as you do and your partner should do the same for you.
Yeah, rules and fun do not really go together. But you have to remember what a huge life changing event this is for the kids, heck it is for you too! Blending two families together can be a magical thing, but instead of just always focusing on how you are going to discipline the kids. Make sure you are taking the time to have as much fun with them as possible. Get to know them, do things with them that they enjoy, take an interest in their lives and just make sure that they know they are now a part of your family and you would love to be part of theirs. It may take a while. But spending time with them and just being there for them is the best way to get to know them which will also let you know better how to deal with them when it comes to discipline.